Maharashtra / Nawab apologises to Bombay HC for commenting on Wankhede family

Zoom News : Dec 10, 2021, 08:27 PM
MUMBAI: Maharashtra minorities development minister Nawab Malik on Friday tendered an unconditional apology to the Bombay high court for his remarks against Dnyandev Wankhede, father of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) officer Sameer Wankhede, in violation of his earlier undertaking to the high court.

In a four-page affidavit, Nawab Malik told the bench that he was under the impression that responses to questions asked by journalists in interviews weren’t covered by his previous undertakings to the court and tendered his unconditional apology.

“I tender my unconditional apology to this hon’ble court in respect of the breaches of my undertaking given to this hon’ble court as recorded in the orders dated 25th November 2021 and 29 November 2021,” Nawab Malik said in his affidavit.

A division bench of justices SJ Kathawalla and Milind Jadhav accepted the senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader’s apology and remanded Dnyandev Wankhede’s plea for an interim injunction against Malik for fresh adjudication by a single judge bench.

Malik’s apology - he also reiterated his previous undertaking not to attack the Wankhede family - came after the two-judge bench on Tuesday (December 7) issued notice, asking him why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against him for wilful breach of the undertaking that he had given earlier. On November 29, Malik assured the high court that he will refrain from defamatory statements against Dnyandev Wankhede or his family members.

The notice was issued after Wankhede’s lawyer cited excerpts from Malik’s interview given after his undertaking where he was alleged to have made defamatory comments against the family.

Malik’s affidavit on Friday underlined that the statements were “not intentional”, and made in response to specific questions asked during interviews and not press releases nor press statements.

“These responses were made in the course of interviews with journalists which covered a large number of topics and a considerable period of time. In the course of such interviews, the journalists had asked specific questions and it was in response thereto that I had made the statements. These responses were made by me in the belief that such responses made in the course of interviews were not within the ambit of the statement made on my behalf to this Hon’ble court,” the affidavit added.

“I had no intention to disrespect, dishonour, overreach the court or breach the said orders,” stated the affidavit, promising that in future, he will not “even answer queries of media persons regarding Wankhede and his family members”.

The affidavit however added that the undertaking would not restrain him from making comments on political misuse of central agencies or the acts of their officers. “I, however, believe my statement would not prevent me from commenting on the political misuse of central agencies and the conduct of their officers in the course of performance of their official duties hereafter.”